MESSAGE FROM THE FESTIVAL DIRECTOR – ALI
Hi everyone, and welcome back to the beautiful area of Saddleworth. Last year’s Festival was supposed to be a one-off, but it all felt so special that here we are again!! 2015 was like welcoming a family back together, so if you’re coming here for the first time, I hope you enjoy both the Festival and our wonderful villages; if you’ve been previously, then welcome back!!
Many of you know that my wonderful mum Hilda died in April at the age of 95; she was my best friend and my biggest support, so her loss is still very much a painful void. I couldn’t have got through it without my family and my fantastic folkie friends – you’re all just so brilliant. Both last year and this year she has donated money towards the Festival – please give what you can to the collection pots because I’m again running this weekend from my own funds – and I would love to do it all over again!!!!
We have some new venues this year, in addition to the usual ones i.e. Civic Hall, Tory Club and Commercial – the new Muse Eatery, and the Cellar Cafe. Thank you so much again to the landlords and managers of the various venues – I hope you enjoy the weekend just as much as the festival-goers do.
Friday night will be quieter than the other days – just a singaround, musicians session, and Fresh Folk at the Muse Eatery. Dean Ross is running this event again, and he will be showcasing young, new Manchester artists who need (and merit) our support.
There are a number of people I do need to thank, for without their help and support this Festival would not have been possible: my radio programme producer Bernard for providing the PA, my friend Vivienne who is Assistant Director, her son Dean who designed the brilliant flyer and programme cover, another good friend Pam who’s running the Craft Fair, Tony Cutler for taking on the role of Chief Steward, Pete Abbott who has managed the Festival website, and also my super son Gareth who has kept Facebook and Twitter going. Plus of course all the wonderful stewards, Moor and Coast bar staff, Christine’s cafe staff, the crazy desk staff led by Kim, the MC’s, Civic Hall staff, the fantastic artists……..and YOU of course for coming here. I hope you all have a fantastic weekend, and I’ll see you around the village.